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Daily Reading: Exodus 17:8-19:15 ESV, Matthew 22:34-23:12 ESV, Psalm 27:7-14 ESV, Proverbs 6:27-35 ESV

Daily Verse: “And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.  This is the great and first commandment.  And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.  On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” (Matthew 22:37-40 ESV)

ENTOLE (1785): “From entellomai signifies ‘to enjoin, to charge with, to give charge’ i.e. in an authoritative prescription.”[i]

Authoritative prescription.

Commandment, in its original form, means an authoritative prescription.  Therefore, God’s commandments equal doctors’ orders.  The Ten Commandments help us have better relationships.  Instead of viewing them as an impossible set of rules no one can keep, look at them as “relationship how-to’s.”  The top four in the list tell us how to relate to God, the remaining six, how to interact with people.  If you want healthy relationships, follow God’s prescription.

Unfortunately, the Ten Commandments have a bad rap.  People don’t like to think about the rules because they highlight our imperfections.  But if we embrace them as ways to become better people, they help us live fuller lives.  And to fulfill Jesus’s greatest commandment, we must obey the others.

Love God, love others.

Looking at the Ten Commandments with a lens of love, you realize quickly they help you fulfill God’s ultimate purpose for our lives, loving.  When asked what commandment sums up all of God’s commandments, Jesus responded, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart…love your neighbor as yourself.”

God didn’t give us commandments to make us feel bad about ourselves.  No, God’s prescription for life helps us live life to the fullest, no matter what our circumstances.  Every day we have an opportunity to respond to the world around us.  Our choice remains simple, to love or not.  God says, choose love.

I recently began volunteering in the children’s ministry at church.  In this week’s message, the children learned why God created us: love God, worship and glorify Him.  At the end of the lesson, we discussed ways to love people for God.  Top of the list, do something nice for their friends, not fight with their siblings, listen to mom and dad, and pray for one another.

Out of the mouths of babes, we get our best instructions.  Follow God’s commandments, His prescription for a full life.

[i] Strong, J., & Strong, J. (2010). The New Strong’s expanded exhaustive concordance of the Bible. Greek Dictionary of the New Testament (p 89) Thomas Nelson

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